Alan Williams

International Notes: Morris, Melli, Delgado

Former Lakers and Nets guard Darius Morris was in camp with the Pelicans last fall and generated some in-season interest from the Suns, but 2018/19 represented his fourth straight season out of the NBA. It appears that streak will continue in 2019/20, as a source tells Emiliano Carchia of Sportando that Morris has signed a “lucrative” contract with Enisey Krasnoyarsk in Russia.

Morris, who appeared in 132 total NBA games after being selected in the second round of the 2011 draft, is still just 28 years old, as so an eventual NBA comeback is possible. For now though, he’ll continue his professional career in Russia after spending his last few seasons in China and the G League.

Here are a few more basketball odds and ends from around the globe:

  • Nicolo Melli, who signed with the Pelicans this summer as a free agent, won’t play for Team Italy in the 2019 World Cup due to a knee injury, the Italian Basketball Federation confirmed today in a press release. As far as we know, Melli is still expected to be ready to go for training camp with New Orleans this fall.
  • Former Clippers big man Angel Delgado, who signed a lucrative one-year contract with the Beijing Royal Fighters, spoke to Jerry Carino of Asbury Park Press about making the move to the Chinese Basketball Association. “I had opportunities to stay in the NBA, but I’m doing what’s best for me,” Delgado said. “I’m excited about the experience I’m going to get in the CBA, and the people I’m going to get in touch with out there. I’m really excited and really motivated to give everyone a show every night. I want to give them what they want — a championship.”
  • Previously-reported international deals for Alan Williams (in Russia) and Omri Casspi (in Israel) are now official, with Lokomotiv Kuban and Maccabi Tel Aviv formally announcing the signings today.

International Notes: Colson, E. Terry, A. Williams, James

After spending much of the 2018/19 season on a two-way contract with the Bucks, forward Bonzie Colson was waived by Milwaukee earlier this month. However, it appears he didn’t remain on the free agent market for long.

According to Emiliano Carchia of Sportando and Turkish journalist Ferhat Yesiltas, Colson is close to an agreement with Istanbul-based team Darussafaka. Markel Brown, Toney Douglas, and Doron Lamb are among the other former NBA players who have suited up for the Turkish club in recent seasons.

Colson appeared sparingly in just eight games for the Bucks last season, but saw action in 46 G League games for Wisconsin and Canton. He averaged 14.9 PPG and 6.9 RPG in 30.8 minutes per contest.

Here are a few more international notes on veterans who have recently played for NBA teams:

  • Emanuel Terry, a 23-year-old forward who appeared in three NBA games for the Suns and Heat last season, has signed with Turkish club Bandirma B.I.K., according to an announcement from the team (via Twitter).
  • After a recent report suggested that veteran big man Alan Williams would likely sign with Russia’s Lokomotiv Krasnodar, Alessandro Maggi of Sportando hears that it’s a done deal. Williams, who previously appeared in 62 games over three seasons in Phoenix, was on a two-way deal with Brooklyn last season.
  • Italian team Olimpia Milano confirmed that it has officially parted ways with veteran point guard Mike James, who played 36 games for the Suns and Pelicans in 2017/18. James became expendable when Olimpia Milano signed free agent guard Shelvin Mack earlier this month.

And-Ones: Lin, James, Harrison, Williams

Point guard Jeremy Lin has received an offer from CSKA Moscow, according to Emiliano Carchia of Sportando. Lin is one of the biggest names remaining on the NBA free agent market but has received little interest following a disappointing stint with the champion Raptors. He was expected to be a rotation player in the playoffs after reaching a buyout with the Hawks but only appeared in eight postseason games during the title run, averaging 1.1 PPG in 3.4 MPG. Lin, 30, has appeared in 480 NBA games.

We have more international basketball news:

  • Olimpia Milano is looking to part ways with former NBA guard Mike James, Carchia tweets. The Euro team signed another former NBA point guard, Shelvin Mack, on Thursday to essentially replace James. Head coach Ettore Messina informed James there’s no playing time available with the addition of Mack. James played a combined 36 games with the Suns and Pelicans during the 2017/18 season.
  • Guard Aaron Harrison will remain in Turkey with Galatasaray, his agent told Carchia (Twitter link). Harrison, 24, last appeared in the NBA with the Mavericks, playing nine games during the 2017/18 season.
  • Former Suns and Nets forward Alan Williams will likely sign with Russia’s Lokomotiv Krasnodar, Lithuanian journalist Donatas Urbonas tweets. Williams, 26, played five games with Brooklyn last season.

NBA G League Announces 2018/19 All-NBAGL Teams

After being named the G League’s Most Valuable Player and the Defensive Player of the Year for the 2018/19 season on Monday, Raptors 905 big man Chris Boucher – now a member of the Toronto Raptors – headlines the All-NBA G League first team, as the league announced today in a press release.

Boucher was joined on the All-NBAGL first team by teammate Jordan Loyd, as well as Capital City Go-Go guard Jordan McRae, Long Island Nets big man Alan Williams, and Agua Caliente Clippers of Ontario center Angel Delgado. All four players are currently on two-way contracts with NBA teams.

That’s a common theme for this year’s All-NBAGL teams, as most of the 15 players named to the three squads aren’t currently NBA free agents, having signed two-way or NBA contracts.

The complete list of the 2018/19 All-NBA G League teams, along with the All-Rookie and All-Defensive squads, is below. Players currently on a 15-man NBA roster are marked with an asterisk (*), while players on two-way contracts are noted with a caret (^).

All-NBAGL First Team:

  • Chris Boucher (Raptors 905) *
  • Angel Delgado (Agua Caliente Clippers of Ontario) ^
  • Jordan Loyd (Raptors 905) ^
  • Jordan McRae (Capital City Go-Go) ^
  • Alan Williams (Long Island Nets) ^

All-NBAGL Second Team:

All-NBAGL Third Team:

NBAGL All-Rookie Team:

  • Chris Chiozza (Capital City Go-Go) *
    • Note: Chiozza wasn’t on an NBA contract for most of the season, but was recently called up by the Rockets.
  • Angel Delgado (Agua Caliente Clippers of Ontario) ^
  • Yante Maten (Sioux Falls Skyforce) ^
  • Theo Pinson (Long Islands Nets) ^
  • Duncan Robinson (Sioux Falls Skyforce) ^

NBAGL All-Defensive Team:

The All-Defensive team is the only squad that features players who are currently NBA free agents — Brimah and Pelle haven’t been on an NBA roster this season, while Payton only briefly spent time with an NBA team, signing a 10-day contract with the Wizards in January.

Paul Zipser To Play In Spain

Former Bulls forward Paul Zipser has found a new home for the rest of the 2018/19 season, having joined Spanish team San Pablo Burgos, according to a tweet from Spain’s Liga ACB (hat tip to Sportando).

Zipser, a second-round pick in the 2016 draft, had a decent rookie year in 2016/17, but averaged just 4.0 PPG and 2.4 RPG in 54 games (15.3 MPG) for the Bulls in 2017/18. The 24-year-old German was waived by Chicago last July in order to create the cap room necessary to finalize the signing of Jabari Parker.

A new NBA opportunity appeared to open up for Zipser earlier this month, with the Nets seemingly on the verge of signing him to a two-way contract. However, Alan Williams – who had left Brooklyn in the hopes of signing a deal with a Chinese team – ultimately remained stateside and returned to the Nets, occupying the two-way slot that Zipser would have taken.

As a result, he’ll resume his professional career overseas, playing for a European team for the first time since 2016. Zipser began his career with USC Heidelberg in Germany in 2010 and spent several seasons with Bayern Munich from 2013-16.

Nets Re-Sign Alan Williams

JANUARY 11: The Nets have officially re-signed Williams to a two-way contract, the team confirmed today in a press release.

JANUARY 10: After complications arose during his contract talks with a Chinese Basketball Association club, veteran NBA big man Alan Williams has decided to remain stateside, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link). According to Wojnarowski, Williams will re-sign with the Nets on a two-way contract.

The news comes just over a week after Brooklyn ended Williams’ previous two-way deal. At the time, it appeared to be a favor to the 25-year-old and his agent, since he seemingly had an opportunity lined up in China, reportedly with the Xinjiang Flying Tigers. With that opportunity no longer on the table, Williams will return to the Nets, with Wojnarowski suggesting he’ll likely be dressed for Friday’s game against Toronto.

After missing most of last season with a knee injury, Williams has bounced back nicely in the G League in 2018/19, averaging 21.0 PPG and a league-high 14.7 RPG in 17 games (26.9 MPG) for the Long Island Nets. The former Sun has yet to appear in a game for Brooklyn at the NBA level though.

Williams’ new deal with the Nets looks like bad news for Paul Zipser, who was said on Tuesday to be in line for a two-way contract from Brooklyn. With Williams back in the mix, there’s no room for Zipser unless the team parts ways with its other two-way player, Theo Pinson. That won’t happen, according to Emiliano Carchia of Sportando, who tweets that Zipser will no longer be joining the Nets.

And-Ones: Trade Deadline, Goodwin, Watson, Williams

There probably won’t be significant activity prior to the trade deadline, according to Keith Smith of RealGM (Twitter links). The biggest trades this season may have already occurred, one source told Smith, because teams are intent on preserving salary-cap space for 2019. Still, some expiring contracts could be moved and there’s always a possibility that a team “might get desperate” and do something bold, the same source suggested.

A front-office member from another team believes many of the trades coming before the deadline could be motivated by trying to stay below the luxury-tax line, even if it results in a talent downgrade. However, that executive also believes that there should be more sellers in a month than there are now. “Some of us will get real about our chances and start moving guys,” the source said to Smith.

We have more from around the basketball world:

  • Guard Archie Goodwin has returned to the United States to join the G League’s Maine Red Claws, the team announced in a press release. Goodwin most recently played in the NBA during the 2016/17 season, when he appeared in a combined 15 games with New Orleans and Brooklyn. The shooting guard played his first three seasons with Phoenix. The Red Claws acquired his returning player rights in a trade prior to the season. Goodwin lost his roster spot with China’s Zhejiang Golden Bulls to former Spurs guard Brandon Paul in late December.
  • Lakers guard and former UCLA star Lonzo Ball has endorsed former Suns coach Earl Watson to be the Bruins’ next coach, Tania Ganguli and Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times report. UCLA recently fired Steve Alford and replaced him on an interim basis with assistant Murry Bartow. “I know Earl personally,” Ball said. “I think he has coaching experience in the league. Obviously, he went there, he’s alumni, so I think he’s a good fit.”
  • Veteran big man Alan Williams is in advanced talks with China’s Xinjiang Flying Tigers, according to Emiliano Carchia of Sportando. Williams was waived by the Nets this week to allow him to pursue the overseas opportunity. He was on a two-way deal after getting released by the Suns during the offseason. Williams was playing well in the G League but did not make an appearance with Brooklyn.
  • Forward Okaro White, who was waived by the Wizards last month, has signed with the G League’s Long Island Nets, according to NetsDaily.com. Long Island acquired his G League rights last year. The Nets are not using their available two-way slot on White, according to the report. White made three appearances with Washington this season.

Alan Williams Waived By Nets, Will Play In China

The Nets have requested waivers on veteran big man Alan Williams, the team announced today in a press release. Williams, a two-way player with Brooklyn, has a deal lined up with a team in China, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (via Twitter).

[RELATED: 2018/19 NBA Two-Way Contract Tracker]

Williams, who will turn 26 later this month, spent parts of three seasons with the Suns after making his NBA debut in March of 2016. The former UC Santa Barbara standout had a promising 2016/17 season in Phoenix, averaging 7.4 PPG and 6.2 RPG in just 15.1 minutes per contest (47 games).

That showing earned Williams a three-year, $17MM+ contract, but a knee injury sidelined him for most of last season, limiting him to five games. Because the final two years of his deal weren’t guaranteed, the Suns released him in the offseason and he caught on with the Nets.

Williams had bounced back nicely in the G League in 2018/19, averaging 21.0 PPG and a league-high 14.7 RPG in 17 games (26.9 MPG) for the Long Island Nets. However, he didn’t appear in a game for Brooklyn, which has a crowded frontcourt, and the team has opted to move on from him, allowing him to pursue an opportunity overseas.

The Nets now have one two-way contract slot open, with Theo Pinson occupying the other slot. Teams have until January 15 to sign two-way deals, so Brooklyn figures to fill its newly-created opening within the next couple weeks.

Alan Williams Signs Two-Way Deal With Nets

SEPTEMBER 24: Williams’ two-way contract with the Nets is now official, the team confirmed today in a press release.

SEPTEMBER 14: The Nets will sign free agent center Alan Williams to a two-way contract, tweets ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Williams spent his first three seasons with the Suns before being waived in July. He played just five games at the NBA level last year, spending most of his time in the G League. Williams appeared in 62 games during his time in Phoenix, averaging 6.4 PPG and 5.7 RPG.

Williams, who worked out for the Cavaliers last week, will be limited to 45 days in the NBA under the two-way deal. He will join an organization that has been looking for big men at the G League level.

The Nets still have their other two-way slot open, along with one more roster vacancy heading into camp.

Atlantic Notes: Knicks, Nets, Saric

It’s hard to be patient when building a team under the spotlight of New York City, Knicks president Steve Mills is acutely aware of just that. Still, after 45 years without a title and two particularly disappointing decades, the club is going to try it out.

I believe [Knicks] fans will accept a team that has a plan and you stick with it and if you deliver players, you do have some hope,” Mills told Steve Popper of Newsday. “[…] We think we have something we can see is different as long as we have the patience to stick to it.

Among other things, the Knicks will need to wait for Kristaps Porzingis to return from a knee injury months into the 2018/19 season and hope for progress out of raw 2017 lottery pick Frank Ntilikina.

There’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • The Nets have addressed their rebounding shortage with vigor. Chris Milholen of Nets Daily writes that the club’s acquisitions of Ed Davis, Kenneth Faried and now Alan Williams prove that they’re committed to improving that particular shortcoming.
  • It’s reasonable to assume that the Sixers envisioned Markelle Fultz as a starter when they drafted him. Derek Bodner of The Athletic writes that much-improved sophomore Dario Saric may need to return to the bench if that’s the case.
  • There are less than 10 days until training camp begins. Currently, two Atlantic Division teams have maxed out their rosters at 20. The Knicks, Raptors and 76ers all have one more space to fill. Check out our list of NBA roster counts for the rest of the league, broken down by team.